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Marketing is becoming an increasingly data-driven subject, inspired by companies seeking to become more personalized and segmented with their data to target customers better, but also by institutions like Chicago Booth that champion the analytical mindset. That is why as a Booth Marketing Club co-chair, I was very enthusiastic to have the opportunity to organize an event through the Kilts Center for Marketing, An Overview of Marketing Analytics: Career Insights and Current Trends”. It was wonderful to bring together fellow Booth alumni who are leaders in marketing analytics. The speakers came from a diversity of backgrounds, from start-ups to large enterprises to consumer-facing companies to business-to-business (B2B) firms.

As a marketer who currently runs the marketing analytics and demand generation strategy for a software and services firm in downtown Chicago, I found the insights shared by the speakers extremely relevant for my own career. Apurv Anand, Director of Marketing Insights and Analytics at Palo Alto Networks, shared that B2B firms are becoming increasingly sophisticated at delineating the buyer’s journey and using that data to figure out the demand unit (or buying committee) at a company, separating the influencers from the decision makers, and ultimately figuring out the exact needs and asks from each user to ensure a successful closed deal. Apurv’s insight resonated with me; my company is similarly making strides to ensure we understand the full picture of who and what is important as a target prospect before trying to go ahead and sell to them. I believe that the ability to be personalized and relevant is only going to become even more important for companies in the next few years, leading to more investment in analytical tools.

Eli Strick, the Head of Customer Insights and Analytics at United Airlines, shared a very similar insight. He said marketing analytics is becoming increasingly focused on the individual as opposed to a segment. With the amount of data firms gather today, it is imperative to be as hyper-personalized as possible when reaching out to a customer. While my business does not primarily sell to consumers, it reinforced my thoughts on how we could gain more success at winning business if only we could cater our offers and messaging to each individual company, as opposed to the general segment the firm belongs in.

Finally, Konstantin Wachs, the Senior Manager of Analytics at Tovala, said something that particularly resonated with me. Customer data should no longer be siloed with just marketing or sales; this data needs to be organized and visualized in such a way that the entire organization can digest it. This data needs to be integrated into the CRM system, but also presented in such a way that leadership and respective department heads can easily know what is going on. I found this insightful because in my own career, I have often struggled to figure out how to communicate data cross-departmentally. With the number of tools out there now, such as Microsoft Power BI and Tableau, this has become easier.

In summary, the event was validating as a marketer and made me especially proud to be a Boothie, knowing that we have so many talented alumni that are forging a new path for marketing analytics and marketing overall.

Andrew Kam

Chicago Booth Evening MBA student

Andrew Kam